UHMS Program for Advanced Training in Hyperbarics




The UHMS Board of Directors announces the outline of the new UHMS Program of Advanced Training in Hyperbarics.

The PATH program development is nearing completion by the Graduate Medical Education Committee and will be open to MD and DO candidates who have previously completed a 40-hour introduction to hyperbaric medicine course. Candidates in the Stellenbosch PATH program in undersea and hyperbaric medicine (UHM), previously offered by UHMS, who deferred completion will be enrolled automatically in this revised PATH program at no charge.

The PATH does not replace board certification in UHM, which is considered the gold standard for training in undersea and hyperbaric medicine. The PATH is intended to demonstrate that a candidate has completed a formal education program covering advanced topics in UHM, as well as having submitted clinical cases for formal review.

The PATH is intended to take between six to 12 months to complete and represents approximately 120 hours of continuing education credits. The PATH curriculum is divided into five (5) main components.


Components of the UHMS PATH

  • Self-directed learning
    • Reading assignments – Participants will read selected textbook chapters, seminal articles and other publications.
    • Video presentations – Learners will view selected PowerPoint presentations.
  • Case presentations/write-ups – Learners will submit 10 HIPAA-compliant case write-ups from the initial consultation to the end-of-treatment summary for peer review by a board-certified UHM faculty member.
  • Case conferences – Learners will participate in regularly scheduled web-hosted case conferences led by board-certified UHM faculty members to discuss interesting cases and provide feedback on case workups.
  • Skills lab – Learners will have to complete the UHMS Hyperbaric Skills and Emergency Management course that will be offered periodically with Chapter and other UHMS meetings.
  • Examination – Learners will have a pre-test and posttest to assess gained knowledge.

Self-directed learning: 60 hours

This portion of the PATH will be broken down into different content blocks and will include reading material and archived video presentations geared to each block.

Block 1: Hyperbaric Physiology and Side Effects
Block 2: Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Block 3: Chronic Radiation Tissue Injury
Block 4: Arterial Insufficiencies, CRAO, ISSHL, Crush
Block 5: Problem Wounds, Diabetic Ulcers, Chronic Osteomyelitis
Block 6: Intracranial Abscess, Acute Blood Loss Anemia, Thermal Burns
Block 7: Necrotizing Soft Tissue Infections and Critical Care
Block 8: Decompression Illness
Block 9: Investigational Uses of HBO2

Reading assignments will be revealed after registration and completion of a pre-test. A post-test will be given after each block has been completed.

Case write-ups: 20 hours

All candidates will be required to submit redacted chart notes of patients for whom the candidate was the primary caregiver. These are not cases in progress. Candidates will have to submit the following documents on a per-case basis.

  • initial history and physical examination
  • periodic progress notes
  • documentation of hyperbaric supervision notes
  • end-of-treatment summary (if this is not part of standard practice, the candidate will have to write a summary of the treatment for submission)

Redacted cases will be scanned and uploaded into the PATH database.

Candidates will have to submit 10 cases covering four separate indications for HBO2.

PATH faculty will review these cases in a blind fashion, assessing the candidate’s has documentation.

  • Is there a history and physical/consultation delineating the need for HBO2?
  • Is there a clear case made for the medical necessity of HBO2?
  • Is there appropriate regular assessment of progress/ need for continued/ending HBO2?
  • Are there documented supervisory notes?
  • Is there a summary of the patient’s course in HBO2?

PATH faculty will grade each case as: Pass, Pass Pending Additional Documentation, or No-Pass. Candidates will submit additional cases until they have passed 10 cases.

Case conference: 12 hours

Candidates will be required to attend six web-based case conferences that will be held monthly by PATH faculty. These case conferences will be two hours in length and include discussion of submitted cases that have had both good and bad workups. The discussion of the cases will remain anonymous.

Skills lab: 8 hours

All PATH candidates must complete a UHMS-sanctioned Skills Lab, which will be conducted as pre-courses throughout the year, ahead of the Annual Scientific Meeting and other selected UHMS meetings.

Attendees of the 2016 ASM pre-course will receive credit for the Skills Lab. The Gulf Coast Chapter Skills Lab, held August 25, is not eligible for this PATH.

Final examination

After completion of the PATH curriculum, all candidates will take a final examination. A passing grade of 80% is required before a certificate can be issued. Candidates may take the exam multiple times if they do not pass.

Electronic access

The PATH program is conducted electronically using our new PATH platform. Stay tuned for details on how to register for this exciting new program.

~ Enoch Huang, President, UHMS and Chair, GME Committee